Latest Equestrian news from Scotland and the North of England

If you have a news item you would like us to publish please send it in to us via our dedicated form on the 'Contact Us' tab above. If acceptable, your news will appear on this page and/or in the next available issue of SNE magazine.

SEA Prize Draw at Blair Horse Trials - 24 August 2009

SEA will be running a prize draw for those joining or renewing their membership of SEA over the 4 days of Blair Horse Trials. The draw will be made on the Sunday night and prizes will include:

Top Prize - £500 Stirlingshire Saddlery Vouchers

Individual Lesson with top Show Jumping Coach John Ledingham

JumpCross Training Session for 2

Gait Analysis

A Year's Subscription to the Scottish and Northern Equestrian Magazine

We hope to see you there on our stand No. 50 on the Garry

Olympic Training Venue to host Olympic Gold Medalist - 21 Aug 2009

2012 Olympic training venue Wellington Riding will be hosting a lecture demonstration, “Training the Event Horse”, and clinic with iconic International Eventer and five times Gold Medalist Mary King on 17th September 2009. 

One of the UK’s most experienced and successful Event Riders, Mary has been British Champion four times, more than anyone to date, and along with her five Gold Medals has won Badminton twice and Burghley once.  Mary will be riding her top horse Imperial Cavalier, who was her reserve horse for the 2008 Olympics and who she hopes to be riding at the European Championships shortly after.  During the day Mary will be giving group lessons and signing her newly launched autobiography before her lecture commences at 7.30pm.  She is following in the footsteps of other top riders such as Lucinda Green and Geoff Billington who have also hosted clinics at the centre. 

For more information contact Wellington riding at:

One in Three Equestrian Consumers Still Spending - 21 Aug 2009

Less than half (48%) of horse owners and riders have cut back on lessons, competing and memberships in the current economic climate, according to new research from the British Equestrian Trade Association (BETA).

The UK-wide survey shows that 70% of consumers are still buying new tack and equipment and only 28% have resorted to feeding cheaper feeds and supplements.     Overall, more than one-third (37%) of respondents said they had not changed their riding or equestrian spending habits at all in the last six months.           

The statistics comprise the first findings of the Equestrian Consumer Research Panel, created by BETA to analyse equestrian consumers’ buying habits and attitudes to topical issues.

“The trend appears to be for making savings on the frequency of competing and training, with owners and riders still spending on caring for horses and purchasing essential equipment,” said Claire Williams, executive director of BETA.

Record Entries at Blair Atholl Horse Trials  - 21 Aug 2009

One of Perthshire's biggest sporting events takes place next week at Blair Atholl when nearly 1000 horses and riders will descend on Blair Castle for four days of top competition.

The Blair Castle International Horse Trials and Country Fair kicks off on Thursday 27th August and runs through to Sunday 30th. Supported by EventScotland and Perth and Kinross District Council, last year it attracted over 45,000 spectators, while its reputation with competitors has led to a record entry this year.

Famous riders from all over the world have entered this year's event, including triple Olympic gold medal winner, Andrew Hoy from Australia and New Zealand's double Olympic gold winner, Mark Todd. Great Britain is also well-represented with William Fox-Pitt, Ruth Edge and this spring's Badminton winner, Oliver Townend.

This year Blair Castle Horse Trials inherited the Scottish Open Championships from Thirlestane. This is an advanced one day event which will be run over a shortened version of the three star course, and many riders are using it as a last run before September's European Championships in Fontainebleu.

Other equestrian events include hunter and pony shows, BSJA and pony club games.

For more information on what's going on each day and entries, please visit the website at

Team GBR Launch Fundraising Auction - 21 Aug 2009

An Online auction has been launched by Equestrian Team GBR to raise funds to send the British Team to the World Equestrian Games in 2010. The site includes exclusive gifts, experiences and a huge array of items that will appeal to everyone. The auction forms a major part of Team GBR's fundraising initiatives, which are now gathering momentum.

There are a number of lots on the site already that you can bid for. Items include the chance to join the eventing performance squad for winter training, a pamper day for two at Peter Jones in Slone Square, lessons with our equestrian stars, the 3ft tall Olympic mascot from Hong Kong and much, much more.

Visit the auction at

FEI World Pairs Driving Championships - 21 Aug 2009

The 13th edition of the FEI World Pairs Driving Championship is underway. The championship will run until 23 August. Kecskemét, 90 kilometres from the capital city Budapest, hosted three FEI World Championships before; in 1978 and 2004 the FEI World four-in-hand Championship and in 1999 the FEI World Pairs Championship.

Ragwort Danger - 13 Aug 2009

The inclement weather of July and August has led World Horse Welfare to issue a reminder to land and horse owners to be on their guard against deadly ragwort.

 Tony Tyler, World Horse Welfare's Deputy Chief Executive, says: "Ragwort poses a huge risk to horse health and in prolonged periods of wet weather, verges and set-aside often go uncut allowing the weed to grow and spread its seeds. Once it flowers around 200,000 seeds per plant are open to the elements and as the seeds are airborne, a field of ragwort that is not even adjoining grazing animals still poses a very real threat."

 A horse that eats ragwort may be condemned to a slow and painful death from liver failure; blindness and disorientation are amongst the symptoms, which can show up after ongoing consumption of even small amounts of ragwort. Once symptoms appear there is seldom a cure for ragwort poisoning; it is also dangerous to other grazing animals.

 Under the Weeds Act 1959 the Secretary of State may serve an enforcement notice on the occupier of land on which injurious weeds are growing, requiring the occupier to take action to prevent the spread of injurious weeds. The Weeds Act specifies five injurious weeds, including Common Ragwort.

The World Horse Welfare is urging communities to work together to rid fields and roads around the UK of ragwort but as it is also poisonous to humans, anyone removing plants should wear gloves and dust masks, and follow official advice on disposing of the plants available from Defra.

 For more information and pictures of ragwort, please visit

Stolen Horses and Microchipping - 4 Aug 2009

Hettie the Fell pony was stolen near Appleby Fair on 6th June, 2009.  Please read this letter written by Hettie's owners about the problems they've had tracing her despite the fact she's mircochipped. 

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